Democracy Perception Index 2018, a survey conducted by Dalia Research, Alliance of Democracies and Rasmussen Global, found that 54 percent of citizens in democracies believe their voice doesn’t have an impact on political decisions, and 64 percent think their government doesn’t act in their interest.
Human beings view the world with a narrative and, for decades, the majority of the world believed that the world would become more globalized and liberal democracy would improve the quality of life of everyone.
A lot of people no longer believe in that story and it’s causing social and political upheaval, globally and locally. Locally, inequality has increased and a lot of people are living in subhuman conditions.
The election of US president Donald Trump, the yellow vest movement in France, Brexit and many government corruption scandals in Guyana and the Caribbean are manifestations of people dissolution with the present political architecture.
The increase in exclusive nationalism is ironic, because to solve our local problems such as unemployment and poverty requires global collaboration. To create jobs in our economy, we either increase Foreign investment, increase tourism or increase export. Developing a calculus that increases our influence in the international community is prudent.
The first country in history was Egypt (310 BC). Besides political considerations, management of the Nile, which was vital for the survival of its populace, was only possible under a nation instead of separate tribes. The problems such as climate change, nuclear weapons proliferation and technological disruption, cannot be solved by any one country. For example, the ethics of artificial intelligence in warfare need to be agreed by all nations. Artificial intelligence has the potential to be more destructive than nuclear war.
The future political order must be global, but will only occur after a global catastrophe. The irony is the people and nations who currently benefit the least from the current international and local order will continue to suffer. We cannot go back to the 1950s, with exclusive nationalism but inclusive nationalism – from nationalism for 780 thousand to internationalism for 8 billion people.
As electioneering is near, we must have national dialogue that’s not parochial but must be meaningful with the intent to fight for implementation of progressive policies.
Brian Ellis Plummer
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